Five-star beachside hotel casino operator SKYCITY has developed Darwin’s first world-class luxury resort for the destination. The $40 million property at Mindil Beach, only minutes from the Darwin CBD, opened in early August with a gala launch. Thirty-two luxuriously appointed guestrooms and two super villas fringe an enormous tropical lagoon swimming pool with its own 30 metre white sand beach. A swim-up bar, the new Cove restaurant, and an opulent Asian-style endota day spa complete the picture. All 32 rooms can be taken up for a single group booking, which also enables exclusive access to the lagoon beach for al fresco functions. Ideal for incentives, the property can also accommodate small meetings in the resort’s boardroom which seats 12. This new accommodation wing complements the hotel’s existing 120 rooms.


The Melbourne Convention + Visitors Bureau’s (MCVB) international incentives coordinator, Jenna Lipshut, has gone to China where she will participate in five months of intensive Mandarin language studies as a recipient of the Victorian State Government’s Hamer Scholarship. The program, which provides funding for recipients to study in China, is part of a government initiative designed to build the Chinese language skills of Victorians across a range of industries, while also promoting greater cultural understanding, and strengthening links between Victoria and China. Ms Lipshut is one of only 11 recipients of the inaugural scholarship and said she is looking forward to improving her language skills in China and the benefits it will have for her career. Ms Lipshut will call the city of Nanjing in Jiangsu Province home and as the only scholarship recipient to have been elected to undertake a homestay, hopes complete immersion in the local culture will further assist her learning.

northern territory

Nicole Jervis has joined the Northern Territory Convention Bureau (NTCB) as assistant director, heading up marketing activities for the bureau. Ms Jervis has a broad background in marketing and communications across a number of sectors. She comes to the NTCB directly from the MacDonnell Shire Council where she was in charge of strategic marketing and communications for this geographically huge shire, which has a land mass of approximately 268,887 square kilometres. Previous to the council, she held a marketing role within the NT Government and has also been an event manager in the business events sector.


Tourism Wollongong has had a name change to Destination Wollongong in a move that the organisation says will bring the city’s expanding CBD and tourism/events base under a single marketing umbrella. Destination Wollongong general manager Greg Binskin said the changes would enable the city to better develop and package itself as a lifestyle destination. “Not only is Wollongong blessed with one of the most beautiful coastlines in the world but we are right on the doorstep of Australia’s main international gateway – advantages we will now be in a better position to leverage,” Mr Binskin said. Wollongong’s transformation began last November when a five-year funding agreement signed by Wollongong City Council enabled Tourism Wollongong to expand its core roles and responsibilities.


The Burswood Entertainment Complex officially became known as Crown Perth in early September. In the changeover the Burswood Entertainment Complex is now Crown Perth, Burswood Theatre is now Crown Theatre Perth, Burswood Dome is now The Dome at Crown Perth, and the
Burswood Convention Centre is now Crown Events & Conferences. The changes follows the completion of a $750 million dollar refurbishment at the complex which has upgraded and expanded all facilities, establishing a new benchmark for luxury accommodation and leisure facilities in Perth. Chef Guillaume Brahimi’s acclaimed restaurant, Bistro Guillaume, also officially opened in early September, serving authentic French bistro-style cuisine. Las Vegas-based chefs Sammy DeMarco and Grant MacPherson have reportedly injected some fun into Perth’s pub scene with the opening of The Merrywell in mid-September. The menu features a winning range of ‘dude food’ favourites.

Visit www.crownperth.com.au to learn more.

Hamilton Island

Members of the London 2012 Australian Olympic sailing team were given a warm welcome to Audi Hamilton Island Race Week by the sailing community recently. A tickertape parade was held to welcome home and congratulate Australia’s outstanding sailing team. Amongst the group were gold medalists Tom Slingsby, Mat Belcher, Malcolm Page, and Iain Jensen, silver medalists Olivia Price, Nina Curtis and Lucinda Whitty, team coach and the medal maker Victor Kovalenko and team manager Peter Conde.


The Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre has notched up its biggest year ever for industry awards as it prepares to celebrate 25 years of successful event delivery in 2013. The leading venue won 14 awards over the 2011/12 financial year, surpassing its previous high of 13. The accolades reflect the centre’s achievements across a wide range of key areas from technical to environmental.


More than 80 conference bureau staff from around the country descended on Voyages Ayers Rock Resort in September for the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux (AACB) annual conference. As part of the program, which this year had the theme “Get CeNTred”, delegates undertook a corporate social responsibility activity showcasing Anangu secondary students at the main Nyangatjatjara College campus near the resort. The group were given an introduction to the college, its values and teaching philosophy, and then undertook an activity assisting the college with maintenance tasks at the campus. The college offers secondary education to remote communities in the NT, including Mutitjulu, Docker River and Imanpa.


The Australian cricket team added to its increasing number of visits to Darwin with the squad’s seven day visit recently for training, briefing and acclimatisation prior to its tour to Asia. The Darwin Convention Centre had the privilege of hosting the squad for briefing and pre-season media activities on the first day of the camp. Of the 30 players involved in the visit, about half were selected for the September visit to the UAE for a series of ODIs and T20 matches against Pakistan and one ODI game against Afghanistan, followed by the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka.


Solution RED was reportedly excited to be providing the technical and creative elements once again for this year’s Flemington Spring Fashion Lunch, which marks the start of the Spring Racing Carnival. Held in early September, the Flemington Spring Fashion Lunch saw more than 700 fashionable guests including Myer ambassadors Rebecca Judd and Kris Smith descend upon The Atrium for an afternoon showcasing the upcoming spring season’s fashion, food and racing with entertainment including a performance from the cast of the Tony award-winning musical South Pacific.


Guest speakers at The Hotel School Sydney’s recent Industry Futures Forum including Accor Pacific COO, Simon McGrath, and Tourism Australia managing director, Andrew McEvoy, were upbeat about the long-term prospects of Australia’s tourism industry. Mr McGrath told guests that Saturday is now the strongest night of the week for Accor, with evidence of Generation Y travelling for events and entertainment. Among other comments, Mr McEvoy said he did not believe that Skype or teleconferencing would overtake conferencing because people still want and need human interaction in order to achieve the best outcomes. He said he believes internet technology will not cannibalise but rather augment the industry.


New Book Launch

Popular speaker, Dr Adam Fraser, has launched a book exploring how people effectively transition between the different roles and environments that make up our lives.

Fifteen minutes prior to delivering a presentation in front of 5000 people, Dr Fraser received news that his best friend had died unexpectedly. Coupled with helping returned soldiers from Iraq work through transitional issues, Dr Fraser was inspired to search for the answer to what makes people transition effectively between life’s most challenging daily scenarios.
He interviewed hundreds of people asking questions such as:

  • How do surgeons go from an argument at home to performing a delicate operation?
  • How does a palliative care nurse spend the day with dying people but not carry the sadness home with her?
  • How does a sales person get rejected over and over, yet still pick up the phone and keep selling with enthusiasm and optimism?
  • How does someone have a terrible day and not go home and take it out on their family?
  • How an elite athlete avoids choking in a high pressure situation?

Dr. Fraser recognised a common thread, which he coined ‘The Third Space.’ People who successfully transitioned from one scenario to another used the transitional space in between to get over the previous scenario and not carry that baggage into the next one. His research showed that it’s not what you do it’s what you do in between what you do that matters.

Visit www.thethirdspace.com.au to find where you can purchase a copy of the book.